I will be gone the next couple of weeks, which means this email blast will have to last you until I’m back. So don’t immediately send it to the trash can as usual, but save it for the valuable information (and inherent literary value) that it contains. Also, I will be out of the office, so please call before coming to the church to make sure someone is here to help you (Pastor Tim is often out visiting people, running errands, or doing church yardwork). I will be back the Tuesday after Labor Day.
This Sunday, August 20th, is the 11th Sunday after Pentecost and Fill the Food Barrel Sunday. And, of course, we’ll be having our highly-anticipated Hawaiian-themed service and Lu-Wow! potluck. Dress up in your most outrageous tropical clothing and, if you wish, bring a side, salad or dessert. Now, before you complain about the picture of a suckling pig on the bulletin cover this Sunday, I’ll have you know that it is actually a photo of a pig-shaped cake I got off the internet. No animals were harmed in the production of the bulletin cover! (I can’t say the same about the potluck food, though) A Worship Committee Meeting will take place at 12:30 pm, when we are all overstuffed and sleepy from the LuWow. There is also going to be a Welcome Statement Straw Poll this Sunday. This unofficial poll is recommended by the RIC process, and is only to gauge how we’re doing before the real vote next week. Which leads us to…
the Special Congregational Meeting on Sunday, August 27th after the service. We will be voting on whether or not to adopt the Welcoming Statement crafted by the RIC Committee, with changes made according to some of your suggestions (thank you!). Here is the revised version:
“We extend a heartfelt embrace to all who are seeking God’s love and grace. We welcome all because God welcomes all, regardless of race or culture, Deaf or hearing, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, or relationship status. We welcome all without regard to addictions, physical or mental health, varying intellects and abilities, imprisonment, socio-economic circumstances, or anything that too often divides us. We invite you, wherever you are in your faith journey, to join us in caring, sharing, and serving God through our unity in Christ. Welcome.”
Believe it or not, this is still shorter than most of the RIC-compliant Welcome Statements out there! Remember, this statement is meant to help people find us and show the world what an open and welcoming church we already are! (I’m sorry, did that influence you? Good! I’m not going to be here to vote!)
There are a couple of handouts Pastor Tim has made available on the Media Table which you should be aware of. One is a particularly heartfelt Message from Bishop Mark W. Holmerud in response to the events in Charlottesville and hate groups in general. The other is the ELCA Social Statement on Race, Ethnicity, and Culture. Adopted in 1993, this document shows just where the ELCA officially stands as a church on these issues.
Next Friday, August 25th is the fourth Friday of the month, which means it will be time for Family Movie Night! Join us at 6:30 PM in the Activity Room for food, friends, and a fun film.
Saturday, September 9th from 9 am to 12 pm will be a Church Work Day (3 hours makes a day?). Help prepare Holland Hall for Sunday School and spruce up the rest of the church campus. The camaraderie and snacks make it hardly seem like work at all! If you absolutely can’t make it, don’t worry – there will be a list of projects you can work on at a more convenient time (you’ll have to provide your own snacks and camaraderie).
Sunday September 10th is Rally Day, when we go back to two services at 8:45 am (21st Century Traditional) and 11 am (Service of Living Praise). Sunday School (10 am) and Adult Forum (10:15 am) also start up again that day. And depending on how the vote goes, we may also be celebrating becoming an RIC church! Parenting Forum (10:15 am) will begin on the 17th, the following week.
In the spirit of cooperation (cross-advertising?) between the local ELCA churches, I’m letting you know that everybody is invited to a Community BBQ tomorrow (Sat. Aug. 18) at Good Shephard, 4221 Carol Ave, Fremont. Now don’t “pig out” too much (Ha!) before the LuWow the next day!
See you in church!